Imago Mundi - Challenging what is accepted

Producing art, producing a discourse, producing a(n altered) worldview; the movement carried through by Lisl Ponger’s Imago Mundi - Challenging what is accepted comprises a mutual reflection of these three areas, and, more significantly, interventions to effect changes in their position in the constellation. First of all there is the production of art, seven classical art forms to be precise, which the film presents examples of and interweaves. Beginning with a Vanitas still life, "The Knight’s Dream" by Spanish Baroque painter Antonio de Pereda (mid-17th century), music, dance, theatre, literature, photography and film follow, either inspired directly by, or loosely associated with, the still life. Film takes the form of a synthetic wrap incorporating all the others. If the starting point is the arrangement of a tableau vivant for a photo shoot (Ponger’s contemporary reconstruction of Pereda’s painting), numerous other set pieces are woven into this initial text: the composition of a piano work, a scene from Büchner’s Woyzeck, a passage being read from Dimitri Dinev’s novel Engelszungen (Angel's Tongues). What may seem on the surface to be a re-enactment of random elements from Europe’s cultural heritage produces, when placed in context, a metamorphic image of a line of thought critical of representation and relating equally to various eras and genres. The rest of Imago Mundi.- Challenging what is accepted turns out to be thoroughly “transformational” too. The film stages contributions to a discourse relating to criticism of the current uses and abuses of power in the form of a symposium (with a banquet afterwards). The portrayal, however, does not obscure its own reproductive nature. On the other hand, just how important the ever-new approaches of the change-effecting gesture is, is demonstrated by the cathartic final act. The (world)view composed in minute detail beforehand disintegrates into fragments and splinters; a “way of seeing” feels its way towards traces which might point the way to the future. (Christian Höller)

Translation: Steve Wilder / Tim Sharp

More Texts

Das Bild der Welt, von Bert Rebhandl, Diagonale Materialien 2006 (Article)

Das Bild der Welt, von Bert Rebhandl, Diagonale Materialien 2006

"Drei Stationen an einem Tag, drei am anderen.". Ein E-Mail von Anja Salomonowitz (Regieassistenz) an Lisl Ponger: Protokoll einer Besprechung zu Imago Mundi, Diagonale Materialien 2006.
Orig. Title
Imago Mundi - Das Gültige, Sagbare und Machbare verändern
37 min
Lisl Ponger
Avantgarde/Arts, Essay
Orig. Language
German, English
English, German, french
Lisl Ponger
Caroline Champetier
Peter Ponger
Bruno Pisek
Lisl Ponger
Lisl Ponger
Amour Fou Filmproduktion
Nora Sternfeld, Moravia Naranjo, Luisa Ziaja, Eduard Neversal, Araba Johnston-Arthur, Marie-Christine Friedrich, Julian Sharp
Supported by
Innovative Film Austria, Wien Kultur
Available Formats
Digital File (prores, h264) (Distribution Copy)
Festivals (Selection)
Marseille - FIDMarseille International Film Festival
Neubrandenburg (D) & Szczecin (PL) - dokumentART Film & Video Festival
Calcutta - India Int'l Women Film Festival
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des österreichischen Films
Barcelona - Int. Women Film Festival